Beijing [China], March 7 (ANI): As the world is set to celebrate International Women's day, Chinese women continue to face political and socio-economic discriminations despite the communist regime's tall claims of women empowerment. The Covid-19 pandemic has further aggravated the situation.
On March 8, the world will celebrate International Women's Day. This year's theme focuses on "Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow," recognising the contributions of women and girls around the world on issues such as the climate change adaption, mitigation, "and response to build a more sustainable future for all.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) last year celebrated its centenary, the celebration masked a stark reality: minuscule representation of women in the party.
The report says that CCP's principal decision-making body, the Politburo, among its 25 members, has only one female member, Vice Premier Sun. China has had only six female members on the 25-member Politburo.
Moreover, women still account for less than a quarter of all National People's Congress and Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference members - the two central organs of the CCP.
As per the Women's Power Index by the Council on Foreign Relations, China was ranked 150th out of 193 UN member states in political parity.
Professor Jude Howell from the London School of Economics noted that even when women make it to leadership positions, they tend to be deputies to men.
The roots of these go to China's patriarchal culture, where hostile attitudes exist towards women in public affairs as their role is perceived mainly in domestic household affairs.
As per reports out of more than 91 million party members, only about 28 per cent are women. Resulting, CCP's commitment to gender equality sounds hollow and is premised on the principle of not 'harming the interests of men.'
In terms of socio-economic discrimination, the economic reforms initiated by the CCP in the 1970s and 1980s brought fundamental socio-economic changes to China. While these reforms were aimed at boosting productivity and efficiency, they had particularly negative consequences for women with low-skilled, and often female, workers facing lay-offs.
The economic reforms have disproportionately benefitted men as the income gap between men and women increased from 15 per cent in 1990 to 25 per cent in 2000. By 2010, according to the official data, the average income of women in Chinese cities had fallen to 67 per cent that of men, and in the countryside, 56 per cent.
In 2018, a survey had noted that Chinese women earned 22 per cent less than men, demonstrating the persistence of such disparity.
However, the COVID-19 pandemic has only worsened their condition.
As noted by the United Nations Development Programme, during China's lockdown, domestic violence against women leapt by two to three times in some areas amid rising economic and domestic strains. (ANI)